New Civil Aviation policy: Yet to take flight

New Civil Aviation policy: Yet to take flight

Morung Express News
Dimapur | June 15


Marking a highly ambitious first day in the office on March 8, the People’s Democratic Alliance government led by newly sworn-in Chief Minister of Nagaland, Neiphiu Rio promised conspicuous changes within a matter of hundred days in office.


In policy regarding Connectivity & Civil Aviation, the first Cabinet meeting decided to “formulate a new Civil Aviation Policy to provide air connectivity to remote locations including air ambulances within six months.”


For this, a committee will be set up to submit its report within two months, it added.


When enquired regarding the improvement and services for civil aviation in Nagaland as promised, it was informed that the initiative is in “the proposal stage” and “being vigorously pursued.”


Speaking to The Morung Express, Kenilo Apon, Secretary, Transport stated that the government has reproposed a Greenfield airport at Ciethu near Kohima for big aircrafts, which was earlier proposed in 2004.


Further, it also proposed to open helipads in all the district headquarters and open air strips for smaller aircrafts in the state.


The government has also proposed to increase helicopter flying hours of 480 hours per annum to 1500 flying hours per annum which can also help improve other helicopter services.


Adding that the people are unaware of availing helicopter service, he informed that central government- Ministry under Home Affairs also provided passengers or patients with a subsidy of paying only 25%.


“Increase in the flying hours,” he stated will help improve helicopter services. Development regarding civil aviation also depends on regional connectivity as well as connectivity with the other metro cities in the country, he maintained.


Not parting ways with the VIP culture in Nagaland, one helicopter in addition “that is already on the job” is being planned to be provided for the VIPs and VVIPs.


“One whole helicopter will be used for VIP, or state and central government officials,” Apon informed as a latest development with regard to “civil aviation in Nagaland.”


While asserting that “no such proposals in the past were brought into discussions with the ministry,” he added, “All hopes are on the central ministry for fulfilling the proposed goals and we hope this time the ministry will do some favour for the state.”